The fundamental rights of migrants living illegally in the European Union
International and European human rights law obliges EU Member States to guarantee respect for the human rights of all persons within their territory, including illegal immigrants.
Thus, although the Member States of the European Union are not obliged to provide their social benefits to illegal immigrants, they must nevertheless ensure that the basic human rights of these migrants are respected.
These basic rights include access to essential health services, emergency and basic health care services, such as the ability to be examined by a doctor and the provision of medicines, as well as health care services for particularly vulnerable groups of migrants such as women who are in pregnancy or have children.
According to Article 24 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and Article 12 of the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, pregnant women must have free care at all stages of pregnancy , while children should be entitled to medical coverage on an equal footing with nationals of the host country, including vaccinations.
Another basic right of children that the Member States must respect is their access to primary education, access to children which should be on an equal footing with nationals.
According to Article 28 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, all children must have free access to primary education.
Finally, it is important to mention access to justice through mechanisms that allow individuals to file complaints when their basic human rights are violated, such as equal employment rights, as illegal immigrants are particularly vulnerable to cases of abuse and exploitation (especially those who work as domestic staff) or in matters of their remuneration or compensation in the event of an accident at work.
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